Today, on our 4th wedding anniversary [traditional gift plants and flowers!], the Gulf horrors continue. I am sorry for the people hurt, involved, for the animals, for the earth, as are millions around the world. Would that we could avoid making this tragedy a political issue, and that we could understand why these industries are labelled inherently dangerous activities in the first place. I also can't help but think of all the people whose jobs will be lost or severely effected by this terrible accident. To all, God speed.
Here, our gardens try to grow and thrive, and I've disocvered that our pumpkins are growing,on our hilltop this time, and very well. I love to see the vines spilling over and down the hill, and our strawberries, planted a year ago, have really taken off. A good tip; make your own scarecrow, and review the history of scarecrow with your kids. You could have a whole festival, creating fantastic examples with themes. Also, these figures are a wonderful way to use old newspapers [stuffing], and to recycle old rags and clothes.
I dried and harvested some mint last week for cooking and pot pouri, and love to crumble the leaves. I've found that adding some to pot pouri that I've saved, along with a drop of my favorite perfume or essential oils, works great. I had acquaintances at craft fairs who made wonderful things like this with soap flakes, and dried flowers and petals. I've always loved drying bouquets and pressing flowers; I recommended it for any child in love with nature and crafts.
I began spring cleaning in earnest last week, and discovered new uses for containers I could recycle for the gift baskets we put together at school. I've always loved using pretty remnants of wrapping paper as collage, to cover boxes to hide little bits of useful clutter, even for writing paper.
For those who have earned a lazy afternoon in the cool shade swaying in a porch swing or a hammock, I recommend writings by James Herriot, Annie Dillard, Henry David Thoreau, or John Muir. Also, for those who truly love Mother Earth, read her myths and origins. Edith Hamilton's books on mythology are an inspiration, and I am never tired of them.
As we approach the Summer Solstice, and of course, Midsummer, it may be time to reread Shakespeare's marvelous play, or to take nature walks, down a path, or along a river. The flowers seem to glow this time of year, and the bees are out in all their glory.
For those who paint, or just want to learn how, this is a great time to get out your watercolors and paper pads.
A seed scattered here and there could do wonders for a humble landscape, and simple rock garden, arranged simply but tastefully, can give a child hours and hours of pleasure. With that in mind, I recommend again two of my favorite books that woo nature amid their pages. These are The Secret Garden, and Wuthering Heights.
Till next time; would love to hear comments.
From our leaf tours:
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